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This is a modified caption
Mar 26, 2004
First and foremost, we've proved now that there is only one team in Essex. Three games, twice away and we've come out with the winning result on each occasion.

As for the rest, I've got so much to say but I'll try to be succinct (not my greatest asset, admittedly)

The game: Casting aside the obvious bias, that was a great game to watch. Can't vouch for the first half an hour but The game really did have it all. Goals, chances, passion, a sending off all contributed to a thoroughly enjoyable game between two sides both intent on winning. Give Col U the credit for that.

The Sending off: I was completely taken back by this. From what i could see, Bentley flicked the ball away and the Col U guy was so late he may have caught a Port Vale player on the way through. Quite where Bentley was supposed to land I couldn't be sure but I can't see the case for retaliation or violent conduct. I think the general atmosphere in the ground was shock cos no-one was quite sure who he'd sent off. To send off a player for something like that in extra time in a derby was a terrible call. Especially as I'm sure Bents would have taken a peno.

The Pens: 8 of the nine taken were top drawer penalties and I was really impressed. Didn't think either keeper would save one and so it turned out.

Wayne Gray: Fair play to the lad. I've not rated his performances at all since he joined but last night he did what you expect from a striker who's not scoring. Worked extremely hard, got up for headers, ran at the defence, passed pretty well. Good game and he was unlucky not to get the winner. Hopefully he can keep that up.

The Ground + fans: Bear in mind I've never been before. The ground is pretty shambolic. I couldn't believe the state of the stands to our right and the one which we were on was almost a replica of Havant and Waterlooville's goal end terraces. Surely they can't go in to the first division with a ground like that. Are there any regulations?

I was very tempted to go and sign the petition, especially after their self-demeaning attempt to get support from the opposition. Then I heard the attendance figure. 3 and a half thousand is pitiful for a loal derby and you have to wonder who the hell would go to a bigger stadium. Unfortunately, after all, we can't play them every week.

The Police (no Sting though?): There was loads!! Was Osama Bin Laden in the crowd or something. Maybe Batman and Robin had found their way to the roof (let's be honest, it can['t have been hard can it!!)